Post Offices: 19th Century vs. Today

KorbenDallas

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Interesting how different post offices started to look, when we compare those magnificent 19th century buildings with today's ugliness and simplicity. Some think that the older buildings were assigned to be post offices just by the nature of already being there. One way or the other, there is a distinctive difference between now and "back then".

Today's average Post Office
post office.jpg


19th Century Post Offices
(just as average)

Toronto Post Office
Ottawa_post_office_in_19th_century.jpg

Toronto Post Office - 19th Century

Washington DC Post Office
Construction began in 1892, and the building was complete in 1899.
Washington, D.C. post office.jpg

Old Post Office (Washington, D.C.)

NYC Post Office
NYC_post_office.jpg

Daytonian in Manhattan: The Lost 1880 City Hall Post Office

London General Post Office
The_Post_Office_in_St_Martin_le_Grand_by_Thomas_Shepherd_(late_1820s).jpg

General Post Office

Bremen Main Post Office Building
640px-Reichspost_Bremen_in_about_1865_it_says.jpg

Bremen Main Post Office Building

Bombay (Mumbai) - General Post Office
Between 1850s to 1870s
Bombay (Mumbai) - General Post Office - 19th Century Photograph.jpg

Bombay (Mumbai) - General Post Office - 19th Century

General Post Office - Calcutta
Between 1850s to 1870s
General Post Office - Calcutta (Kolkata) - Mid 19th Century (Second View).jpg

General Post Office - Calcutta (Kolkata) - Mid 19th Century

General Post Office, Dublin
General Post Office, Dublin.jpg

Late 19th Century General Post Office, Dublin

Former Post Office, Ghent, Belgium
1898-the-post-office-belgium.jpg

1898 The Post Hotel opens in an Old Post Office Building in Ghent, Belgium
********
KD: Obviously this architecture is not Post Office specific. In general, this is just how they built "back then". At least, that's the official position. They built like that and did not care about economics, logistics and other such non-sense.


Other two interesting examples by designation type would be Libraries and Government Buildings.

Please contribute your own images of the 19th century Post Offices, and share your opinion on the above. Let's not post images of any other designations for the older buildings in this thread. For libraries, government buildings, water towers, railway stations etc., please start a separate thread.
 

sonoman

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I was not aware of such extravagant post offices but probably not as shocked as most about them.
the post master 'General' is the highest authority on any land (next is coroner, then sheriff FWIW) but this topic is still certainly a mystery to me.

but consider this: can there be any government without a 'post'? the 'post' is the 'seat of government'. note that the USPS is not the U.S. Mail or the General Post Office however they are all connected and the later has been hidden for the most part but still remain functional. (zip code vs rural routing and general delivery etc.)

I will try to dig up more info that might help with it but for now these should help to see what we are dealing with here:
Post [ POST, a. Suborned; hired to do what is wrong. [Not in use.]POST, ... ]
post | Search Online Etymology Dictionary 22 pages?

Benjamin Franklin, First Postmaster General

United States Postal Service - Wikipedia

United States Postmaster General - Wikipedia

The office, in one form or another, is older than both the United States Constitution and the United States Declaration of Independence
Universal Postal Union About history

just trying to give some idea of what we are actually dealing with here and that there is more to it than meets the eye.

p.s. while Im thinking about it, small unincorporated towns/counties used 'bill boards' for postings and older 'tribes' continued to use totem poles to serve the purpose of a posting notices etc. 'posted'. town halls were made in larger communities and had notaries and hall of records, etc.
 
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freezetime26

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Interesting how different post offices started to look, when we compare those magnificent 19th century buildings with today's ugliness and simplicity. Some think that the older buildings were assigned to be post offices just by the nature of already being there. One way or the other, there is a distinctive difference between now and "back then".

Today's average Post Office
View attachment 15626

19th Century Post Offices
(just as average)

Toronto Post Office
View attachment 15627
Toronto Post Office - 19th Century

Washington DC Post Office
Construction began in 1892, and the building was complete in 1899.
View attachment 15629
Old Post Office (Washington, D.C.)

NYC Post Office
View attachment 15630
Daytonian in Manhattan: The Lost 1880 City Hall Post Office

London General Post Office
View attachment 15631
General Post Office

Bremen Main Post Office Building
View attachment 15632
Bremen Main Post Office Building

Bombay (Mumbai) - General Post Office
Between 1850s to 1870s
View attachment 15633
Bombay (Mumbai) - General Post Office - 19th Century

General Post Office - Calcutta
Between 1850s to 1870s
View attachment 15634
General Post Office - Calcutta (Kolkata) - Mid 19th Century

General Post Office, Dublin
View attachment 15635
Late 19th Century General Post Office, Dublin

Former Post Office, Ghent, Belgium
View attachment 15636
1898 The Post Hotel opens in an Old Post Office Building in Ghent, Belgium
********
KD: Obviously this architecture is not Post Office specific. In general, this is just how they built "back then". At least, that's the official position. They built like that and did not care about economics, logistics and other such non-sense.

Other two interesting examples by designation type would be Libraries and Government Buildings.

Please contribute your own images of the 19th century Post Offices, and share your opinion on the above. Let's not post images of any other designations for the older buildings in this thread. For libraries, government buildings, water towers, railway stations etc., please start a separate thread.
Not only post offices, but most of the buildings back then were beautifully crafted. Humanity as a whole suffered a downgrade (Money, art, music, architecture,durable products,etc), now what only matters is just profit and making cheap products. We have been taken by the parasites.
 

tupperaware

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Not only post offices, but most of the buildings back then were beautifully crafted. Humanity as a whole suffered a downgrade (Money, art, music, architecture,durable products,etc), now what only matters is just profit and making cheap products. We have been taken by the parasites.

There is a book I purchased late last year that nails this degrading of architecture from beautiful gothic to modern decomposition. Its called "Making Dystopia" by James Curl. The evil madman that started the destruction of all the building styles we find amazing on this forum is....Le Corbusier.

Making Dystopia: The Strange Rise and Survival of Architectural Barbarism by James Stevens Curl

Le Corbusier - Wikipedia

KD might want to get it just for the bibliography which is huge and contains many references to pre 20th century gothic building styles.

In a nutshell, Corbusier eliminated ornamentation and all the tradesmen that specialized in that.


:31 Corbusier gets raked.​

The Decorative Art of Today (1925)
In 1925, Le Corbusier combined a series of articles about decorative art from "L'Esprit Nouveau" into a book, L'art décoratif d'aujourd'hui (The Decorative Art of Today).[27][28] The book was a spirited attack on the very idea of decorative art. His basic premise, repeated throughout the book, was: "Modern decorative art has no decoration."[29] He attacked with enthusiasm the styles presented at the 1925 Exposition of Decorative Arts: "The desire to decorate everything about one is a false spirit and an abominable small perversion....The religion of beautiful materials is in its final death agony...The almost hysterical onrush in recent years toward this quasi-orgy of decor is only the last spasm of a death already predictable."[30] He cited the 1912 book of the Austrian architect Adolf Loos "Ornament and crime", and quoted Loos's dictum, "The more a people are cultivated, the more decor disappears." He attacked the deco revival of classical styles, what he called "Louis Philippe and Louis XVI moderne"; he condemned the "symphony of color" at the Exposition, and called it "the triumph of assemblers of colors and materials. They were swaggering in colors... They were making stews out of fine cuisine." He condemned the exotic styles presented at the Exposition based on the art of China, Japan, India and Persia. "It takes energy today to affirm our western styles." He criticized the "precious and useless objects that accumulated on the shelves" in the new style. He attacked the "rustling silks, the marbles which twist and turn, the vermilion whiplashes, the silver blades of Byzantium and the Orient…Let's be done with it!

Of course Le Corbusier had his predecessors.
 
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BossesWife

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The all look like Tartarian-esque buildings

Interesting how different post offices started to look, when we compare those magnificent 19th century buildings with today's ugliness and simplicity. Some think that the older buildings were assigned to be post offices just by the nature of already being there. One way or the other, there is a distinctive difference between now and "back then".

Today's average Post Office
View attachment 15626

19th Century Post Offices
(just as average)

Toronto Post Office
View attachment 15627
Toronto Post Office - 19th Century

Washington DC Post Office
Construction began in 1892, and the building was complete in 1899.
View attachment 15629
Old Post Office (Washington, D.C.)

NYC Post Office
View attachment 15630
Daytonian in Manhattan: The Lost 1880 City Hall Post Office

London General Post Office
View attachment 15631
General Post Office

Bremen Main Post Office Building
View attachment 15632
Bremen Main Post Office Building

Bombay (Mumbai) - General Post Office
Between 1850s to 1870s
View attachment 15633
Bombay (Mumbai) - General Post Office - 19th Century

General Post Office - Calcutta
Between 1850s to 1870s
View attachment 15634
General Post Office - Calcutta (Kolkata) - Mid 19th Century

General Post Office, Dublin
View attachment 15635
Late 19th Century General Post Office, Dublin

Former Post Office, Ghent, Belgium
View attachment 15636
1898 The Post Hotel opens in an Old Post Office Building in Ghent, Belgium
********
KD: Obviously this architecture is not Post Office specific. In general, this is just how they built "back then". At least, that's the official position. They built like that and did not care about economics, logistics and other such non-sense.

Other two interesting examples by designation type would be Libraries and Government Buildings.

Please contribute your own images of the 19th century Post Offices, and share your opinion on the above. Let's not post images of any other designations for the older buildings in this thread. For libraries, government buildings, water towers, railway stations etc., please start a separate thread.
 

anotherlayer

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I give you the Buffalo Post Office, still rocking out to this day. Almost identical to the Old Post Office, Washington DC.

Old Post Office (Buffalo, New York)
Formerly the tallest building in the city of Buffalo from 1901 to 1912. It was designed by the Office of the Supervising Architect of the old U.S. Post Office Department during the tenure of Jeremiah O'Rourke when construction started in 1897. The $1,500,000 building opened in 1901 during the tenure of James Knox Taylor and operated as Buffalo's central post office until 1963. The highly ornamented Gothic Revival style four story building features a 244-foot tower over the central entrance. The main feature of the interior is a roofed courtyard. It was subsequently occupied by various federal offices. Since 1981, it has been home to the city campus of the Erie Community College.

Its tower is 244 feet (74 m) tall.

postoffice2.jpg

postoffice3.jpg
 

freezetime26

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There is a book I purchased late last year that nails this degrading of architecture from beautiful gothic to modern decomposition. Its called "Making Dystopia" by James Curl. The evil madman that started the destruction of all the building styles we find amazing on this forum is....Le Corbusier.

Making Dystopia: The Strange Rise and Survival of Architectural Barbarism by James Stevens Curl

Le Corbusier - Wikipedia

KD might want to get it just for the bibliography which is huge and contains many references to pre 20th century gothic building styles.

In a nutshell, Corbusier eliminated ornamentation and all the tradesmen that specialized in that.



3:31 Corbusier gets raked.

"The Decorative Art of Today (1925)
In 1925, Le Corbusier combined a series of articles about decorative art from "L'Esprit Nouveau" into a book, L'art décoratif d'aujourd'hui (The Decorative Art of Today).[27][28] The book was a spirited attack on the very idea of decorative art. His basic premise, repeated throughout the book, was: "Modern decorative art has no decoration."[29] He attacked with enthusiasm the styles presented at the 1925 Exposition of Decorative Arts: "The desire to decorate everything about one is a false spirit and an abominable small perversion....The religion of beautiful materials is in its final death agony...The almost hysterical onrush in recent years toward this quasi-orgy of decor is only the last spasm of a death already predictable."[30] He cited the 1912 book of the Austrian architect Adolf Loos "Ornament and crime", and quoted Loos's dictum, "The more a people are cultivated, the more decor disappears." He attacked the deco revival of classical styles, what he called "Louis Philippe and Louis XVI moderne"; he condemned the "symphony of color" at the Exposition, and called it "the triumph of assemblers of colors and materials. They were swaggering in colors... They were making stews out of fine cuisine." He condemned the exotic styles presented at the Exposition based on the art of China, Japan, India and Persia. "It takes energy today to affirm our western styles." He criticized the "precious and useless objects that accumulated on the shelves" in the new style. He attacked the "rustling silks, the marbles which twist and turn, the vermilion whiplashes, the silver blades of Byzantium and the Orient…Let's be done with it!"[31]"

Of course Le Corbusier had his predecessors.
Can you believe that i already watched that video?, yes, i agree with him that Corbusier had a lot of influence in the degradation of architecture, but i wouldn't put all the blame on him, what the 20th century experienced was a huge change in culture, religion, and values, thanks to the first and second world war, the communism genocides, and other genocides like the armenian holocaust. A lot of cultures and traditional values were lost.
 

Jef Demolder

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Here the main post office of Bruges, neogothical style, 1891

postbrugge02.jpg

And the central post office of Louvain, Flemish Renaissance style, 1894.

postleuven02.jpg

It seems to me that in the 19th century last great efforts and associated financing were realised as to maintain the beauty and decorative approach of the ancient times. At that time, people had still the motivation, the money and the craft to realize things like this. After the First World War started the degradation. It is as if we have lost contact.
 

dreamtime

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It is generall accepted that Australia is a very young country, and even according to the old maps basically broke off from wild, ice-free and uninhabitated Antarctica a couple of hundred years ago. This pokes a serious hole in the theory those buildings are of ancient origins. They can not really be much older than 200 years. Hmmm...
 

jd755

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New Zealand has lots new zealand general post office at DuckDuckGo

The one in Havana may have been rebuilt
general-post-office-havana-cuba.jpg

Lima
lima.jpg

Colombo

General-Post-Office-1895-1905.jpg


Cairo

po-cairo.jpg

Malta

malta.jpg
It is generall accepted that Australia is a very young country, and even according to the old maps basically broke off from wild, ice-free and uninhabitated Antarctica a couple of hundred years ago. This pokes a serious hole in the theory those buildings are of ancient origins. They can not really be much older than 200 years. Hmmm...
Melbourne's is completely at odds with its surroundings if this engraving is anywhere near accurate
mel2.jpg

 
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sonoman

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amazing photos! the fact that most of these also have clock towers indicating jurisdiction of time should be noted.

now Im wondering when the latest extravagant 'post' offices were built, what era this practice ended?
 

jd755

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Just notice the Maltese one is sporting an ornate facade and poor quality building/re building work behind it.

A feeling, well a couple, have emerged whilst searching for these buildings out. The cleanliness in the photographs is in stark contrast to the present day which feels quite surreal and is likely an indicator of how 'we' have been dumbed down.
On that line it seem to me three buildings or at least their facades have not been carved from stone but cast in stone. A concrete method so too speak that has been 'locked up' in a cabinet in a submarine at the bottom of the marianas trench as part of the dumbing down.
Casting stone is far quicker than quarrying, cutting, shaping, polishing stone. It requires far less resources and infrastructure to install yet has the same strength as real stone.
Question is i suppose what sort of infrastructure, machine, mechanisms, factories would be needed to do this casting, more searching doh!

But the feeling that is strongest is that i am not looking at the past s told by the dates on the pictures but at an entirely different world that has been placed out of time.
I did mention being barking mad on the 'when does it curve' thread well here's the confirmation.
 

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